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FBI: Violent and property crime down in early 2011

WASHINGTON — The FBI said Monday that violent and property crimes reported to police continue to drop despite tough economic times.

An FBI report states that violent crimes reported in the first half of 2011 were down 6.4 percent compared to the first six months of 2010. The number of property crimes, including burglary, larceny and vehicle theft, decreased 3.7 percent.

All four offenses in the violent crime category murder and non-negligent homicide, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault decreased between the first half of 2010 and 2011. Robbery experienced the biggest drop of 7.7 percent.

The report is based on information from more than 12,500 law enforcement agencies, although many crimes go unreported to police. There were drops in every region of the country.

The figures continue a downward trend in recent years. Violent crime was down 6.2 percent in the first half of last year, 4.4 percent in 2009 and 3.5 percent in 2008. And property crimes dropped 2.8 percent last year, 6.1 percent in 2009 and 2.5 percent in 2008.

Online: FBI's 2011 Preliminary Semiannual Uniform Crime Report.